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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Cabinet Meeting: 7th October 2013

Report of the Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Innovation, Planning and Transportation

Barry Island Urban Realm Programme Eastern Promenade works contract

Purpose of the Report

1.         To provide Members with an update on the development of the scheme undertaken to date.

2.         To seek approval to put in place a process to appoint a main contractor for the eastern promenade works programme.

Recommendations

1.         That the progress made to date be noted.

2.         That Cabinet give authority for the Director of Development Services, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Innovation, Planning and Transportation, to appoint a main contractor for the Eastern Promenade works programme.

3.         That delegated powers be given to the Director of Legal and Regulatory Services, in consultation with the Director of Development Services and the Director of Resources, to review, issue and sign, as appropriate, the contract documentation required for the works to proceed.

 

4.         That the Urgent Decision procedure, in accordance with Article 13.09 of the Council's Constitution, be implemented in respect of the above recommendations.

5.         That the remaining £79k available Capital programme funding on the Eastern Shelter structural repairs be vired from Visible Services to the Barry Island Urban Realm Programme account as contribution to the works proposed.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To provide a full update on the proposal.

2.         To provide appropriate authority for the award of contract.

3.         To provide appropriate authority to enable the contract documentation to be put in place.

4.         To provide authority to take this matter forward urgently in order to meet the programme deadlines for works and grant spending in the current financial year

5.         To allow appropriate financial management

Background

3.         Members will be aware that following the bid submission made by the Vale of Glamorgan Council in February 2013 the Welsh Government approved a first tranche of grant funding for the Barry Island Urban Realm Programme amounting to £632,000. That grant allocation was to cover the costs associated with the delivery of the capital works to provide a car park at Nell's Point and the consultancy/design fees associated with the development of the remainder of the Urban Realm Programme across the Island. On 18th June 2013 a further report was provided to the Barry Regeneration Area Board giving an estimated breakdown of costs associated with the various elements of the programme and recommending that the rest of the funding be allocated to allow urgent progression of the scheme. That recommendation was accepted and a second grant approval was provided by Welsh Government on 17th July 2013.

4.         The bid submitted sought approval for improvements across the wider Barry Island resort area and the provisions of improvements to resort elements such as signage, interpretation, bins, seating, railings and artworks etc and more location specific proposals relating to the options for the development of an improved walking and cycling route on the causeway required for the National Cycle Route and footpath works required for the National Coastal Path. In addition a scheme for improved play equipment and access at Maslin Park was to be considered but the majority of the concept plans produced by Powell Dobson and Atkins, acting in a consultancy role to the Council, concentrated on the area of the Eastern Promenade and an intention to dramatically improve the appearance and attraction of that area as a contextual development in support of the Council's intentions to market both the Nell's Point site and the site of former conveniences located alongside it.

 

Relevant Issues and Options

5.         Progress on the schemes to date have been as follows;

6.         Nell's Point car park works and marketing. Early in the process the Councils Project Management Unit  (PMU) submitted a request to the Planning Department querying whether prior notification of demolition would be required for the first stage of site works relating to the removal and crushing of the slab foundation on site. The Planning Department indicated prior notification would not be required and Visible Services procured a specialist contractor to commence this work in early May following the Project Board approval of the scheme on 3rd May 2013. A separate Planning Application for the main construction works was also submitted by the PMU acting as agent. That application was determined by the Planning Committee on the 6th June 2013 following site inspection and was approved subject to conditions relating to time period of approval, landscaping and construction methodology.  The second stage construction works progress through to mid July and the scheme provides some 550 car parking spaces and events area (the latter increasing the car parking available when not in use to circa 610 spaces).  Minor completion works have continued and subject to the installation of barriers the scheme works are complete.

7.         Approval was given by Cabinet in March 2013 to take forward the marketing of both the Nell's Point site and the adjoining former conveniences site. Since that time officers have been working on the marketing brief and have undertaken a procurement exercise to appoint agents to take forward he marketing.  Following a competitive tender process the Council (as funder of the work and land owner) has appointed Knight Frank as the agent and an initiation meeting was held with them on 4th June 2013.   A detailed brief has been put together with some advice from Board Members and advisers and the site was officially marketed on the 18th September 2013. The brief follows a one stage approach with expressions of interest, business case and draft outline scheme proposals required to be submitted by the 17th January 2014.  The adverts seek bids either separately for the former toilet block site and the larger Nell's Point site or as part of a comprehensive scheme covering both sites but advises that submissions for part development of the Nell’s Point site will not be accepted.  Press coverage to date has been very positive.

8.         Maslin Park.  For Maslin Park the intention had been to follow a defined procurement route used extensively already in the BRA programme area.  The Council's Landscape Team are managing the procurement and implementation exercise. Given that the Report of the 18th June 2013 to the Barry Regeneration Area Board indicated a variety of risks associated with the Urban Realm Programme a suggestion was made that the Maslin Parks works be held in abeyance until the Eastern Promenade works programme had been tendered and tender submissions evaluated in order that appropriate contingency funding might be retained.  The Board indicated that it would not wish the Maslin Park element of the programme to be delayed, reduced or dropped from the programme and that consideration should be given to other programme elements.

9.         Since the last BRA Board meeting Council officers have reviewed the Council’s own funding provision and following an update report on the proposal and tenders submitted a submission for use of delegated powers was made on 7th August 2013 and agreement was given to utilise £120,000 of the Barry Regeneration Area Project Development Fund to pay for the Maslin Parks works.  Following that approval the contract with Wicksteed Leisure Limited has been agreed and works have commenced on site with a programme running through until late October 2013.

10.      General Urban Realm works and artworks.  The options relating to resort management and comprising signage, benches, railings, lighting and interpretation etc will follow on from the baseline surveys/reviews undertaken by Powell Dobson/Atkins and by the officers from PMU/Tourism and resort management.

11.      As part of the baseline survey existing artwork at the island has been reviewed with the Council's Arts Officer and Celwaith ( providing arts consultancy support). The view is that the John Clinch artwork ( Beside the Sea) on the causeway merits restoration but that the series of mosaics on the promenade do not merit restoration as, firstly, they would be expensive to restore and, secondly, even if restored their life expectancy in their current location would be limited.   Celwaith had produced an initial artworks appraisal report following the stakeholder engagement carried out with Powell Dobson/Atkins.  Three artists were shortlisted and interviewed by officers, Celwaith and a Cabinet Member and following appraisal Gordon Young has been appointed to design a traversing wall incorporating artwork as an element of the structural walling on the Eastern Promenade. An artwork design contract is now in place and Gordan will shortly be providing his concept design for approval.  Gordon’s work can be viewed at his website http://gordonyoung.net/projects.html.  An evaluation of artists capable of restoring the John Clinch artwork is underway but no artist has been appointed as yet.  Additional artwork design is proposed in respect of options for artwork based lighting on the Eastern Promenade and again artists are being shortlisted for appraisal.  Celwaith intend to submit a bid to Arts Lottery to support this element and the programme for implementation may extend beyond March 2014.

12.      The Causeway and Footpaths. Given that the options relating to the development of improved walking and cycling facilities on the Barry Island Causeway would all impact upon the adopted highway the Council's Highways Design team is taking the design lead in respect of the causeway scheme and the related designs/routes being considered for footpath development.  Although not affecting the overall programmes critical path works in this location would severely impact upon island access and will need to be programmed to reduce such impact and risk.  A feasibility report has been produced which contains a number of design options providing for:

·           An on carriageway mandatory cycle lane

·           An on carriageway advisory cycle lane

·           An off carriageway shared walking and cycle path

·           An off carriageway partially segregated scheme

 

13.      The on carriageway mandatory and advisory cycle lanes were discounted on the basis of the restrictions of the carriageway and the need for traffic calming to support them. Option 3 is the preferred option and can be achieved subject to bridge evaluation.  However the feasibility report highlights that this option could require the relocation of BT infrastructure currently running across the bridge and that the relocation costs of this work could amount to an additional cost implication of £178,000.  The cost estimate for Option 3 is indicated at £398,000 even without such diversion costs and at present, therefore, given the tendered costs associated with the Eastern Promenade is it not considered that this element of the programme is either affordable or good value for money if the costs approach £573,000.  The BT costs will continue to be reviewed and an update provided in due course.

14.      Eastern Promenade.  The emphasis of the concept design work undertaken by Powell Dobson/Atkins concentrated on the Eastern Promenade.  Again, given the estimated programme costing of £4.1m set against the budget availability of £3.3 to cover design, procurement and delivery of the programme the Council's officers have made efforts to bring the elements back in line with budget and to develop the concepts along with the client officers and following discussions with the Project Board.

15.      In this respect the Council's Landscape Team developed a more traditional approach to the proposed landscaping element of the eastern promenade works which would sit above the eastern shelter.  This scheme will provide linkages into Clement Colley Way footpath and the new car park works.  The current design would be more in keeping with the existing landscaping leading to this area and has been developed following more detailed discussions with the client group and the planning application submitted reflects this approach.

16.      The Council's Landscape team have also reviewed the design and costs associated with the bespoke water mist feature indicated at concept stage and have developed a simplified design based upon utilisation of natural stone finishes rather than fabricated units. Working alongside a supplier these designs are progressing and via a design contract novation route a supplier is giving guidance regarding specification and implementation alongside the procured set to consultancies who are providing both engineering and structural engineering support to the programme team.

17.      A local Bridgend architect has also been appointed to work exclusively on the beach hut element of the programme and to develop building specification as well as fabrication methodology and likely supply chains.

18.      The Engineering consultancy support is being provided by Bingham Hall  following a procurement exercise undertaken following Project Board agreement of a short list of companies on the 3rd May 2013.  Interviews took place on the 3rd June and an initiation meeting took place on the 10th June 2013.Since then the project team have worked to an extremely tight programme but did manage to put together detailed designs for the planning application submission.  At risk the scheme has been tendered on the 5th August 2013 in order to meet the programme requirements to the following contractors with a tender return date of 9th September 2013.

 

·           Knox and Wells Limited

·           Encon Construction Limited

·           Alun Griffiths ( Construction) Limited

·           WRW Construction Limited

·           CRC Construction Limited

 

Tenders were returned on time and four bids were submitted. The lowest priced tender has been submitted by WRW Construction Limited at  £2,518,617.17.

 

19.      Cost update and conclusions. In August 2013 RPA (the Council's cost consultants) had produced their own cost estimate for the eastern promenade works element indicating likely costs of circa £2.9 m which, together with the estimated costs relating to the other works elements proposed across the island (and scheme costs to date) would have made the larger programme undeliverable without recourse to reducing the number of elements or design and specification review.  The shifting of the works costs associated with the Maslin Park element ( £120,000) out of this programme (ie funded directly by the Council) has eased these concerns and the officers conclusions that the Causeway element is not good value for money (if costs are £573,000) would further reduce the pressure on the budget. No decision has yet been made by the Project Board (as it meets on 1st October 2013) but with tender submissions at circa £2.5m for the Eastern Promenade works alone officers would recommend that decisions relating to the implementation of the other elements of the programme relating to interpretation, footpaths, bins, benches and railings all be held in abeyance until December.  The reason for this is to retain appropriate project contingency funding (circa 12%) in relation to the largest spend element ie that relating to the eastern promenade works, until the risks associated with that scheme have reduced via their re-evaluation and removal from the appropriate risk register as the works progress on site.  Once these risks have been removed the smaller element items can be approved and only require short procurement and implementation programmes.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

20.      The Eastern Promenade works are being funded via the Welsh Government grant to the Barry Island Urban Realm programme and Welsh Government approval will be required to agree the new programme and grant allocation under the terms of the grant approval.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

21.      The report has no sustainability or climate implications

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

22.      Appropriate contract documentation will need to be provided, signed and sealed in accordance with the Council's Contract Standing Orders.

Crime and Disorder Implications

23.      There are no crime and disorder implications.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

24.      The report has no equal opportunity implications.

Corporate/Service Objectives

25.      The proposal would support the Corporate Plan in its promotion of the regeneration of the area of Barry Island

Policy Framework and Budget

26.      This report is a matter for Executive decision by Cabinet.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

27.      Local Ward Members have been consulted.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

28.      Economy and Environment.

Background Papers

None

 

Contact Officer

John Dent. Major Projects Manager - 01446 704617

 

Officers Consulted

Operational Manager Legal - Committee Reports

Head of Finance

Senior Accountant

Estates Group Officer

Project Board for the scheme

 

Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas - Director of Development Services